America’s largest abortion provider could be stripped of $360 million of federal funding following an “historic vote” last week.
Planned Parenthood is already barred from using taxpayers’ money to perform most abortions, and now the group could lose federal funding for any of its services.
The measure was proposed by Republican Congressman Mike Pence as part of a measure to cut costs, and last week the House of Representatives voted 240-185 in favour of it.
The news, which comes after a pro-life group released a series of secret videos exposing illicit activities at some of the abortion group’s clinics, has been welcomed by pro-lifers.
Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of The American Centre for Law and Justice, said: “It’s stunning that Planned Parenthood receives more than $360 million a year in federal taxpayer funds.
“The approval of the Pence Amendment in the House is long overdue and sends a strong message – American taxpayers are no longer willing to subsidise the nation’s largest abortion provider.”
Tony Perkins of Family Research Council said: “The fact that Planned Parenthood not only left minor girls trapped in prostitution, but encouraged it, shows an incredible lack of humanity on their part.
“What goes on behind the windowless offices of Planned Parenthood, as Live Action’s videos show, is both saddening and shocking, but the fact that it has often been done with taxpayer dollars is indefensible.”
Penny Nance, CEO of Concerned Women for America, said: “This is a historic vote and we are very grateful to the House of Representatives and its leadership for listening to the American people.”
The amendment will now pass to the US Senate and Penny Nance urged the Senate to follow the House of Representatives’ example.
But Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood, said: “The outcome of this vote is not a surprise, but it is radically out of step with mainstream American values and it is out of line with the issues voters want Congress to focus on”.
Earlier this month it was revealed that Planned Parenthood had fired one of its managers after she was secretly filmed coaching a man posing as a sex trafficker about his illicit operations.
The video showed two people, posing as a pimp and a prostitute, seeking access to abortions, contraceptives and tests for sexually transmitted infections for their prostitutes as young as 14.
The secret footage appears to show Amy Woodruff, the manager of a New Jersey branch of Planned Parenthood, advising the couple on how the girls can access such services without attracting suspicion.
A number of other videos were subsequently released.
Earlier this month it emerged that an abortion doctor in America was facing multiple murder charges amid accusations that he killed seven newborn babies by severing their spinal cords using a pair of scissors.
Dr Kermit Gosnell is believed to have made millions of dollars by performing illegal late term abortions at his clinic in Philadelphia.
Prosecutors allege that Dr Gosnell induced the births of the babies during the sixth, seventh or eighth months of pregnancy, and then severed their spinal cords.
The gruesome case first emerged last year when officials went to investigate drug related complaints at Dr Gosnell’s clinic only to discover what prosecutors have described as a “house of horrors”.
Commenting on the discovery District Attorney Seth Williams said: “A search of the office last year by authorities found bags and bottles holding aborted fetuses scattered throughout the building.
“Jars containing the severed feet of babies lined a shelf. Furniture and equipment was blood-stained, dusty and broken.”